Avon Viaduct, Wolston, 2 July 1837.
© NRM / Pictorial Collection / Science & Society Picture Library
Wash drawing by John Cooke Bourne, from a collection of views of the construction of the London & Birmingham Railway (LBR). In 1833 Robert Stephenson (1803-1859) was appointed chief engineer of the LBR, the first railway into London. Running from Curzon Street Station, Birmingham, to Euston Station, London, the 112 mile long line took 20,000 men nearly five years to build, at a cost of £ 5.5 million. The nine arch viaduct pictured carried the railway some 27 feet above the river Avon and the road to Wolston. The LBR opened on 17 September 1838.